Desserts

Halloween Brownie Cupcakes

I can’t believe it’s Halloween time again! And I also can’t believe that three weeks ago I was in the South Australian Outback, mingling with kangaroos and emus, and making Quondong Pie! Now I’m back in San Diego getting ready for Halloween.

Living part of the year in South Australia, I notice a difference between American and Australian culture: Australians generally do not engage in trick-or-treating, whereas Americans certainly do. When I was growing up in Chula Vista, California, we used to go trick-or-treating door-to-door in our neighborhood and one of our favorite houses was one that offered us homemade Toffee Apples! Things have changed now- no homemade goodies are allowed anymore and children often go trick-or-treating in malls- even going to liquor stores like BevMo (which I saw last year)!

So, here is my recipe for Halloween Brownie Cupcakes. The bottom layer consists of a rich chocolate brownie and the top layer is made from a white cake mix with some orange food coloring mixed in. I made the bottom brownie layer from scratch, but you could also use a brownie mix if you wish. After the cupcakes are baked and then cooled, you add a delicious topping of Butter Cream Icing with orange and black sprinkles. And dear reader, where did you go trick-or-treating when you were growing up?

Halloween Brownie Cupcakes
Serves 12
Delicious cupcakes with a brownie bottom and orange-colored top layer cake- perfect for Halloween.
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Prep Time
40 min
Cook Time
12 min
Total Time
52 min
Prep Time
40 min
Cook Time
12 min
Total Time
52 min
For the Brownie mixture
  1. 1 cup white sugar
  2. 1/2 cup butter, melted
  3. 1 tsp vanilla extract
  4. 2 eggs
  5. 1/3 cup dark chocolate, melted
  6. 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  7. ½ cup all-purpose flour
  8. ¼ tsp baking powder
  9. Pinch salt
For the Orange Layer Cake
  1. 1 white cake mix
  2. Several dashes of orange coloring
  3. Black and orange sprinkles for decoration
For the Butter Cream Icing
  1. ½ cup (1 stick) of salted butter, softened
  2. 1 ½ cups of icing (confectioner’s) sugar
  3. 1 ½ tsp of vanilla flavoring
  4. 2 tbsps milk
To prepare the brownie mixture
  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 F (180 C). Combine the white sugar, melted butter, vanilla and 2 eggs and melted chocolate. Mix well with electric beaters. In a separate bowl, mix the cocoa powder, all-purpose flour, baking powder and salt. Fold the dry flour mixture into the melted chocolate mixture until well-combined. Pour the brownie mixture into each cupcake liner, filling each liner 1/3 to the top.
To prepare the Orange layer cake
  1. Prepare the white cake mix as per the instructions on the package. Add 4-5 drops of the orange coloring and mix. Spoon the mixture on top of the brownie layer until the cupcake mixture comes to slightly below the rim of the cupcake liner. Bake for 10-12 minutes until the cupcakes are cooked through and spring back to the touch. Let cool before adding the Butter Cream Icing (see below).
To prepare the Butter Cream Icing
  1. Combine the softened butter and icing sugar using electric beaters. Add the vanilla flavoring and milk and stir. The mixture should be smooth and elastic, not too runny or dry. If the icing is too stiff, add a little more milk. Add the icing to a piping bag with a wide-tipped nozzle and pipe onto the top of the cupcakes using a swirling motion. Add the sprinkles and a few candy corn pieces (optional).
Notes
  1. Make sure the cupcakes are thoroughly cooled before adding the icing. To remove the cupcake liners from the cupcakes, first gently pull down the sides of each liner, then gently take a knife to release the bottom of the cupcake from the liner.
G'day Soufflé http://www.gdaysouffle.com/

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  • John/Kitchen Riffs
    October 21, 2017 at 2:46 pm

    Candied/Toffee/Carmel Apples were all good treats when I was a young Trick or Treater! So were Cokes (in the bottles). In the 50s, NO ONE drank very much soda, so that was a big deal good treat. 🙂 Anyway, These cupcakes are lovely — so seasonally appropriate. 🙂
    John/Kitchen Riffs recently posted…Moroccan-Spiced Beet SaladMy Profile

    • Fran
      October 21, 2017 at 3:40 pm

      Thanks John! I remember drinking lots of Nehi Grape Soda and Orange Soda- looks like they still sell them but I don’t drink them any more!
      Fran recently posted…Halloween Brownie CupcakesMy Profile

  • mimi
    October 21, 2017 at 11:57 pm

    These are so cute. On Halloween I’ll actually be flying to Sydney to start a once-in-a-lifetime trip! Cannot wait to experience Australia and New Zealand!

    • Fran
      October 30, 2017 at 12:36 pm

      Mimi, I hope you enjoy your trip- you’ll love the Sydney Harbor and the mountains of New Zealand are spectacular!
      Fran recently posted…Halloween Brownie CupcakesMy Profile

  • Raymund
    October 29, 2017 at 1:49 pm

    Ohh those cupcakes look amazing! Brownies on cupcakes is such a nice idea

  • the hungry mum
    October 30, 2017 at 3:38 pm

    kids trick or treat at bottle shops?! Say whaaaaat?! As I type Miss 9 is helping her dad put her Halloween costume together for tomorrow night. Each year it grows in popularity in Sydney but nothing like the US. These brownie cupcakes look AMAZING – way more treat than trick!
    the hungry mum recently posted…Easy one bowl caramel cake with chocolate ganacheMy Profile